Last week I packed up the car, buckled in the kids, and we hit the road for a road trip!
First stop: visiting Uncle Brien and having a belated birthday celebration with him (his birthday was while we were at the beach). It was nice to spend a little time with him, but it was quick -- we had a long drive ahead of us!
Then we were off to West Virginia, where we met Memere and Pepere. It was our first time seeing Pepere since April, when he started hiking the Appalachian Trail! He finished up the northern half in early August, and is now hiking the southern half.
We swam in the hotel pool, showing off for Memere and jumping off Pepere's shoulders. We went out for ice cream after dinner. And before bed, we made cream beards to match Pepere's! Sweet Pea even had a sleepover in Memere and Pepere's hotel room.
The next morning we were up super early to go hiking with Pepere. We hiked about 1.5 miles: three-quarters of a mile down a mountain, hugs and good-byes to Pepere, then back up. It was extremely rocky and a bit steep, but it was fun to get a taste of the Appalachian Trail, and the kids enjoyed finding the white blazes on trees that marked the Trail.
Memere: Little Man, go slowly on these rocks!
Little Man: (sprinting past) MY FEET ONLY HAVE ONE SPEED!
We spent the rest of that day with Memere, back in the pool, having a nice lunch, and trying (unsuccessfully) to get the kids to take a nap.
Then the kids and I headed to Pennsylvania to visit Kris and Jeff. Unfortunately Daniel was visiting his grandparents for the week, but we had fun with Sarah. CC was in heaven with all Sarah's American Girl doll paraphernalia, and Sarah was generous enough to give CC a few extra outfits and even some roller skates for Kate. CC came running down the stairs to show me.
CC: Mommy! Look what Sarah gave me! Roller skates!
Me: Wow, that's so generous of Sarah.
Little Man: CC, those roller skates will not even fit you.
Little Man was also in heaven: Daniel had loads of Star Wars toys and decorations around the house, including a very realistic light saber that made noises and everything. I'm pretty sure I know what's going on Little Man's Christmas list.
For dinner, we had corn on the cob, a first for my kids. Even better, we shucked it ourselves. I have fun memories of shucking corn at my Auntie Arline's house when I was young, so it was cool to do it with my kids.
CC and I devoured all the tomatoes from Kris and Jeff's garden. We can't resist deliciously ripe tomatoes!
It was a long drive home, but thanks to a portable DVD player and Happy Meals, we all survived. What an adventure! One thousand miles, five states, and three days later, we were happily back home with MJ.